Your international career launch will be full of Catch-22s.

You will often need proficiency to fluency in the local language. However, how are you supposed to gain this without having lived there for a long time?

You’ll need a work visa or permanent residency of some sort. The only way to get this is to become employed, but you can’t become employed without the visa. How do you deal with this conundrum?

Path to International Career
The path to an international career isn’t going to be straightforward.


You will cost more to the company than a local hire because they will have to sponsor you with a visa. You will likely demand a higher salary than a local in a similar role. How are you going to convince them that your local equivalent, who is native-level-fluent in the local language, is worth less than you on paper? Why are you worth the headache, cost, and paperwork of a visa sponsorship?

Companies will want to know if you have local work experience and if you can adapt to the local environment. How are you supposed to gain boots-on-the-ground experience if you don’t get a shot to work in the first place?

Citation Needed

International careers often depend on you to work through your network to get a foot in the door at companies with whom you’d like to interview. How do you build a network from scratch in a country with which you’re unfamiliar?

It’s often said that the best way to get hired abroad is to show up, hit the street, and start making connections. What’s often neglected is that it takes a wad of cash to fly over, pay rent/hotels, and sustain oneself for an unknown period of time, while still having enough in savings and emergency funds. How do you convince strangers to give you an interview before you even show up in this country?

In many countries abroad, you won’t be allowed to rent an apartment or open a bank account without a work or business visa. What do you do? Do you couchsurf for 2 months, blindly hoping for something to change? Do you waste all of your cash on hotels? Or do you live at 8 dollar hostels, living with rowdy Aussie and Italian backpackers, and getting scabies and/or bedbugs?

It’s hard enough to get a job as it is. These logistical hurdles certainly don’t make life any easier.

This is why we are Career Hackers. So that we can create the most direct path possible to launching an international career.

Check out more at our International Career Launchpad.